Thursday, April 07, 2011

Cloud Mountain By Aimee Liu

Hope Newfield is an American woman tutoring foreign students in English when she met Leong Po-yo(Paul). It was 1906, a time dissatisfaction growing against foreigners in America especially the Chinese. They fell in love and eloped to Wyoming to get married.

There they met two more mixed race couple. And a friendship was formed from there.

When Paul and Hope came back to Berkeley to stay. When people found out about their marriage, they were outraged. For some time, they fear for their life.

Life was hard for them. The Chinese looked down on Paul for marrying a foreign woman while the American were not so open minded on Hope's marriage to Paul. Even the butcher and vegetable vendor seems to shy away from her.

Due to an unhappy event, Paul decided to bring Hope back to China, his home country. Hope was like a fish out of water in China. Things were so different there.

All sorts of things seems to be pulling them apart. Paul's mother does not like Hope. His works seems to bring him away from Hope most of the time. Hope was lonely. However, their marriage managed to survive the War Lord era and Two World Wars.

I am impressed by the lenght of this book.The events described here are incredible vivid and life like. I can practically feel the venom targeted at them by the good neighbours when they got to know that Hope had married a "Chink".

And when comes to China, I can feel Hope's helplessness and loneliness. Her husband practically put the trust to their houseman more than her. During times when she needs him the most he was not around for her. It's really impressive that despite everything, Hope managed to held on to their marriage. Maybe it's due to her name being "Hope"?

My only complaint on this book is that it's a long book to read...but then some can say it's value for money. Yes, this is a rich book.

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